Fort Meade Retirement and Transition Services
Chief, Retirement Services Branch: 301-677-9603 or DSN 622-9603
Retirement Services Counselors: 301-677-9600 or 301-677-9434
Chief, Transition Services Branch: 301-677-9603 or DSN 622-9603
Transition Center: 301-677-9581 or 301-677-9583
Retirement Services Office:
2234 Huber Road
Fort Meade, MD 20755-5073
2234 Huber Road
Fort Meade, MD 20755
Retirement Services Room 011 (Basement)
Transition Services Room 009 (Basement)
- Chief, Retirement and Transition Services Branch: 301-677-9603 or DSN 622-9603
- Retirement Services: 301-677-9434
- Transition Center: 301-677-9581
- Fax: 301-677-2142
- Retirement: email@example.com
Hours of operations
- Monday through Friday: 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
- 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. (Appointments Only)
- 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. (Walk-In Hours)
- Closed all holidays and weekends
Prior to processing through the Transition Center, Soldiers must attend a Preseparation Briefing at least 90 to 120 days prior to separation. These briefings are held to schedule for these sessions, Soldiers need to contact the ACAP (Army Career and Alumni Program) office by phone (301)677-9871 or in person, Building 2234 Huber Rd, Room 001, Basement. Separating Soldiers receive their ETS/Discharge Orders from their unit S1. Soldiers taking transition leave in conjunction with their separation need to bring approved DA Form 31 (Request for Leave) and the Unit Clearance Papers (DA Form 137-1-R).
At least 120 days prior to separation date, Soldiers need to review their Military Personnel File (MPF), previously known as 201 File, to ensure it is accurately posted and contains all documents, i.e. Awards, Promotion Orders, Schools attended, etc. The Transition Center will retrieve the MPF 90 days prior to separation date to prepare the Separation Certificate, also known as DD Form 214. This will be the most important document Soldiers receive from the Army and accuracy of the same cannot be overemphasized.
Soldiers need to bring the below listed items/documents to the Transition Center for final out processing: :
- Installation clearance papers.
- Medical Records.
- Dental Records.
- Physical (SF 88 and SF 93 (within 4 months of Transition Leave or Separation date, whichever is earlier) or waiver.
- Pre-separation Counseling Checklist (DD Form 2648).
- Contract (Enlisted) to USAR Control Group, Reserve Unit or National Guard unit if receiving full separation pay.
- DA Form 71 (oath of office) will be required of Regular Army Component Officers being discharged but wishing to retain commission in USAR. Officers receiving full separation pay must serve in the Individual Ready Reserve (IRR), Reserve Unit, or National Guard for 3 years.
- GI Bill Election if qualified under TAMP (Transition Assistance Management Program).
- DD Form 2656 (Retirements Only)
ETS (Expiration Term of Service) is the completion date of Enlisted Soldier's contract. Separation orders are published up to 120 days prior to ETS date. Soldiers may pick up copies of their orders from their Unit S1 ONLY, which will be distributed upon submission of an ETS Packet from Unit S-1.
Pre-Separation briefings are held the second Wednesday of every month at 1 p.m. in the Start Right classroom located at Bldg 2234, Huber Road, Room 004 (basement room) Fort, Meade, Maryland. There is no reservation needed for this briefing and will be on a first come, first serve basis for seating.
Remember: Separating Soldiers must see Fort Meade Soldier For Life - TAP office and attend the TAP Pre-Separation briefing 90 to 120 days before ETS.
References: AR 635-200, AR 635-10
There are two types of Chapter Separations: Voluntary and Involuntary
Voluntary Chapter Separations are requested by Soldiers. A DA Form 4187 and supporting documents are processed by the Soldier's chain of command and approved by the Approving Authority cited in AR 635-200. Judge Advocate General (JAG) personnel review the Chapter to ensure it is complete and all legal issues have been considered. JAG can concur with requested separation or suspend execution of the approved separation.
Involuntary Chapter Separations are recommended by the Soldier's Commander and are processed by the Soldier's chain of command and approved by the approving authority cited in the regulation. JAG reviews the Chapter to ensure that it is complete and all legal issues have been considered. JAG can concur with recommended separation or suspend execution of the approved separation.
To retain potential mobilization assets, only Soldiers with no potential to meet mobilization requirements will be discharged without Reserve commitment. Soldiers separated because of alcohol or other drug abuse rehabilitation failure, misconduct, homosexuality or with a characterization of less than under honorable conditions will not be transferred to the Individual Ready Reserve (IRR) per AR 635-200, SECTION VIII, Paragraph 1-36.
Separation Orders are published within 72 hours of receipt of Chapter separation. Separation Dates will be within three days for "Other than honorable" separations to several weeks (AR 635-10) after orders are completed. Unit personnel need to notify the Transition Center at time of receipt of Chapter and before orders are completed if Soldier has requested and Commander has approved Transition Leave.
Separations under Chapters 10, 13 and 14 of AR 635-200 require an escort in rank of SGT/E-5 or higher. In the event the Soldier is in the rank of SGT/E-5 or above, the escort must be one grade above service member being discharged. Separation Orders of these Soldiers will be provided to the Unit S1 personnel, not to the individual Soldier.
All separating (voluntary or involuntary) Soldiers must attend the Pre-Separation briefing as soon as they are identified for separation.
References: AR 600-8-24
Any Officer in the Active Army or USAR may tender a resignation under AR 600-8-24, chapter 3. The Secretary of the Army will accept resignations. An officer whose resignation has been accepted will be separated on the date specified by the Department of the Army. The date of separation, as specified or directed, cannot be changed without the prior approval of HRC nor can valid separation orders be revoked subsequent to the approved date of separation.
A complete packet consists of:
- Counseling from the first Colonel/O6 in the Officer?s chain of command. (Only exceptions are Chaplains, Judge Advocates, AMEDD personnel and Officer?s with more than 10 years active federal service when the request is submitted).
- Request from Officer in the format stated in AR 600-8-24.
- Chain of command recommendation.
- Reserve Component Counseling (Mandatory regardless of individual?s intent)
- Memorandum for victims of sexual assault for administrative separation. (D.O.D Instruction 6495.02 and AR 600-20, Chapter 8)
For more information about the officer unqualified resignation packets contact the Personnel Operations Branch at (301) 677-7036.
Officers should contact the ACAP office and attend a Pre-Separation briefing when decision to resign is submitted.
References: AR 635-40
The Transition Center personnel receive electronic approval from HRC Physical Disability Section and publishes separation orders within 72 hours after all documents are received from the service member.
A copy of Orders will be provided to the Unit S1 (Soldier can pick up own orders).
Soldiers must see ACAP office and attend a Pre-Separation briefing as soon as they are identified for Physical Disability Separation.
References: AR 600-8-105
We prepare the Orders in date sequence. ETS (Enlisted) and ESA (Officer) orders are published 120 days before separation date. The earliest separation date has orders completed first. All orders are prepared based on separation date and distributed upon completion.
S1s needing copies of orders due to immediate separation of Soldier and approved departure for PTDY/leave, may pick up a copy of orders from the Transition Center providing an authorization roster, listing names with authority to pick up orders, has been provided to the Transition Center (Soldier can pick up own orders). Rosters need to be current and updated at least annually.
Transition Center needs copy of DA Form 31 for Transition Leave and/or PTDY 30 days before start of leave.
Remember: Separating Soldiers must see Fort Meade ACAP office and attend the ACAP Pre-Separation briefing 90 to 120 days before ETS/ESA. Upon receipt of your orders you will receive an appointment letter with an ETS/ESA Pre-Separation briefing date and time. We will ensure the Unit S1 and the Command is involved in these Pre-Separation briefings.
References: AR 600-8-10
Leave is an "Authorization" or "Privilege", not an "Entitlement" and must be requested on DA Form 31.
Commanders may disapprove or restrict leave based on mission/operational requirement or for disciplinary reasons. Approval authority may be further delegated to Company Commanders and other leave approving authorities.
Commanders have the authority to recall Soldiers who have departed on transition leave; however, Soldiers may be recalled only for reasons such as investigations, UCMJ, or when "Stop Loss/Move" has been declared.
Soldiers whose ETS date is a Saturday, Sunday or legal holiday must report to the Transition Center on the last working day before the normal ETS date. This allows Soldiers to be discharged or released to the USAR on Friday and enables them to receive the DD Form 214 (Discharge Certificate) on that day instead of waiting until the following Monday.
Soldiers taking transition leave will receive copy 4 of DD Form 214 prior to their departure providing clearance has been received from Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS) personnel. Otherwise it will be mailed to the address provided by them with copy 1 after the actual separation date. Care must be exercised by Soldiers who request leave and whose last active duty date is a Saturday, Sunday or legal holiday. They need to list that Saturday, Sunday or legal holiday as a "thru" date on DA Form 31 (Leave request) to avoid untimely departure or reduction of their final pay.
References: AR 600-8-10
Transition PTDY is an "authorization" or “privilege” and not an "entitlement".? Normally the approval authority is a commander in the rank of LTC or above.? This authority maybe further delegated to Company Commanders and other Leave approving Authorities.? Commanders have the authority to recall Soldiers who have departed on PTDY; however, Soldiers may be recalled only for reasons such as investigations, UMCJ or when Stop Loss/Move has been declared.
The purpose of transition PTDY is to facilitate transition into civilian life for house and job hunting for Soldiers being separated by various reasons.? It is a nonchargeable leave for eligible and authorized Soldiers:
- Officers who are being separated because of failure for promotion and must leave active duty.
- Enlisted at Retention Control Point (RCP).
- Enlisted being separated on Qualitative Management Program (QMP).
- Officers and Enlisted being separated on Medical Disability Separation rated at less than 30%.
- Officers and Enlisted being separated on VSI (Voluntary Separation Incentive Program) or SSB (Special Separation Benefit Program)
- Officers and Enlisted with an approved voluntary retirement.
The Following Soldiers are not eligible for any Transition PTDY:
- Soldiers voluntary separating as a result of Expiration of Term of Service (ETS) or Expiration of Service Agreement (ESA).
- Soldiers transitioning from the Army under conditions other than honorable.
- Officers who resign their commission, except VSI/SSB.
- Soldiers with approved voluntary separation under the Voluntary Early Release Program (VERP) or Enlisted Voluntary Early Transition (VET) program.
Eligibility requirements for TAMP benefits:
- Soldier is separated under VSI (Voluntary Separation Incentive Program)
- Soldier is separated under SSB (Special Separation Benefit Program)
- Soldier has been denied reenlistment (must have served six years on Active Duty for Separation Pay-Enlisted and Officer)
- Soldier is involuntarily separated (RCP, QMP, RIF, Chapters 5-8, 5-13, 9, and 18)-RCP must not be able to reenlist for two years-Example, E4 must have 8 years 30 days to receive Separation Pay.
- Discharge is honorable or under honorable conditions